Faculty & Staff E-news 12.15.14

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Thank you to the many of you who last week participated in a meeting with Dr. John Romans, candidate for SOE dean, transported him across campus or shared a meal with him as we search for the SOE’s next dynamic leader. Your input is very important to the search process, and I urge everyone who did meet with Dr. Romans to complete the Survey Monkey link that should have by now been sent to you. This week we will be hosting Drs. Mary Howard Hamilton, Anita Thomas and Marius Bobac and I again encourage you to attend events with these candidates as you are able.

I was pleased to see so many of you at our Strategic Action Plan Update and Celebration last week at Grand Street Café. With a year-end SAP update, wonderful meal, great conversation with colleagues and a few rousing games of bingo (with prizes), the leisurely afternoon was a fitting recognition for all the hard work faculty and staff do to live out our mission and vision on a regular basis.

Last Thursday evening, 22 SOE students, staff and Kansas City Public School administrators attended a free screening of the documentary, TEACH.  This film (by Academy award-winning director, Davis Guggenheim) chronicled four teachers and their students during one academic year and highlighted their challenges but also their successes.  The director hoped the audience would appreciate the film’s “honest, authentic, no-holds-barred depiction of teaching”.  The response from the participants was overwhelmingly positive and many shared their own takeaways from the film and how they could relate it to their current work and studies.  Because of the response from the group, SOE Student Government members plan to host another education-related film in the spring.

With graduation looming and the end of the semester near, please be mindful of the 5:00 p.m. deadline on Tuesday, December 23rd, for turning in this semester’s grades.

As a reminder, if you have not already completed your UM information security training, please complete it by December 31st.

Given the retirement of Dr. Bonita Butner, I am pleased to announce that Dr. Dianne Smith has agreed to serve as interim division chair of ELPF, effective January 1st.

And, as this will be our last enews until mid-January 2015, please let me extend my best wishes to each of you for a holiday season full of family, friends, unexpected joys and safe travels! I am appreciative of the support you have shown me as your interim dean, and I am thankful to work with such talented and dedicated colleagues across the school.

Happy New Year!